Thursday, March 29, 2007

Synthetic Plugs?

As most of you know, I love wine. I've tried my best to explore different grapes throughout the years and learn about how to truly savor and experience wine. I love the complexity and mystery of wine. I love the ritual of tasting. I love how it makes me focus, and even meditate, on my senses. I love the sense of class and sensuality that it brings to any occasion (unless it is White Zinfandel - lol).

One of my goals has been to attend a formal wine tasting. I've been to several informal ones, but I want to become an armchair sommelier of sorts, and reading a book or articles is not enough. So, in the meantime, I am going to make my first (very amateur) attempt at writing about wine. Now keep in mind that I'm an artist, and I'm sensitive about my...just playing. Hopefully this will allow me to keep track of good finds, share them with friends, and expand my knowledge on this subject.

Woop Woop 2005 Shiraz (Australia) $12.99 - This wine was recommended to me when I went to Bin 604 and requested a "...fruity red that was not sweet". This week I made spaghetti with a fire roasted tomato sauce, fake chicken, broccoli, and garlic. I knew a wine that was not bitter or sweet, but fruity and intense, would bring out the flavors of this dish.

I was so excited to taste the wine that I did not smell it until after the first sip, and I could not detect a distinct aroma. Now mind you, I broke my last wine glass earlier this week (now I know why people have china cabinets), so I am not drinking this out of a proper glass, nor did I give the wine time to aerate.

This wine is very rich and smooth with an earthy taste. Usually when I can classify a red as "earthy" there is usually a bitter (tannin) taste associated with it. However, this wine manages to balance its earthiness with a fruity flavor. There is a subtle sweetness that comes out while tasting it and a pomegranate aftertaste. I'm wondering if this is typical of a Shiraz? That will be something to look into. According to Business Week, Australian Shiraz's are a great buy if you want quality at a moderate price. Judging by this wine alone, I'd have to agree! It is hard to find a red, within a reasonable price range, that doesn't taste like watered down bitter grapes.

One thing I want to do, is have a fruit tasting of fruits typically used to describe wines: black currants, blackberries, pomegranates, apricot, etc. I don't typically eat these types of fruits and maybe if I familiarize myself with their tastes it will help me identify the flavors in wine.

Another interesting note is that the wine does not have a cork. I've noticed that some makers are moving away from the cork claiming that screw caps, or in this case a synthetic plug (wait...that doesn't sound right), are more convenient, prevent cork rot, and still preserve the integrity of the wine. R.H. Phillips is a favorite maker of mine and they have an explanation on their site as to why they opted for a screwcap.

As you can see, I have now successfully avoided writing about my weight. I haven't made much progress, but I haven't gained anything. Right now, I am EXHAUSTED! So more on my journey later!

1 comment:

rashad said...

Damn the weight writings, this wine review jump off is much more productive and fun. I think a switch is in order